By DANIEL KITTREDGE City officials and members of the public will soon have an opportunity to hear directly from the applicant behind the proposed Cranston Crossing development. A site visit, being held jointly by the Planning Commission and City
City officials and members of the public will soon have an opportunity to hear directly from the applicant behind the proposed Cranston Crossing development.
A site visit, being held jointly by the Planning Commission and City Council, is scheduled to begin at 5:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 11. Participants will meet in the main parking lot of Mulligan’s Island Golf & Entertainment at 1000 New London Ave.
Similar site visits have been held ahead of hearings on other development proposals, including earlier this year at the Oaklawn Avenue site where a liquor store and other new commercial construction will replace the former Mardi Gras nightclub and other buildings.
A notice from the city indicates the site visit is “not a traditional public hearing” and no votes will be taken. Participants are advised that mask-wearing and social distancing requirements will be in place.
The applicant behind the Cranston Crossing proposal, Massachusetts-based Coastal Properties LLC, is seeking an amendment to the Mixed Use Planned District, or MPD, zoning that was adopted in the late 1990s to allow for Mulligan’s Island to open at the New London Avenue site, which was formerly open space known as the “Cornfields.”
According to documents formally introduced before the City Council last week, the anchor of the new development would be a wholesale club with a fueling station situated on the central portion of the 55-acre property. Officials have said Costco is the planned occupant of that portion of the development.
The proposal also involves additional restaurant and commercial buildings and a residential component to be developed as part of a later phase. The commercial aspects of the amended MPD would utilize Cranston’s C-4 zoning, while the residential piece would be governed by A-8 zoning.
The plan also calls for the relocation of a historic cemetery and the installation of a new three-way signalized intersection on New London Avenue.
A purchase agreement is said to be in place for Coastal Partners LLC to acquire Mulligan’s Island, although details have not been publicly disclosed. Mulligan’s is listed as a co-applicant on the MPD amendment submission, as is the state of Rhode Island given that the project involves land swap.
The Planning Commission is scheduled to hold a hearing on the MPD amendment application on Sept. 1. The matter would go before the City Council’s Ordinance Committee on Sept. 17, which would put it on track to go before the full council on Sept. 28.
As the project has garnered wide attention and entered the formal review process, a number of concerned neighbors have mobilized to lobby against it.
The group Cranston Neighbors for Smart Development held a community meeting on July 28 in the Oak Hill Terrace neighborhood, drawing dozens of officials, candidates and residents for a discussion focused on concerns about the development.
Those include traffic, noise and light pollution, runoff, the effect on home values and the loss of green space.
Cranston Neighbors for Smart Development have released a video on Facebook outlining the concerns and urging residents to reach out to elected officials in opposition to Cranston Crossing. The group is also collecting donations through PayPal to support it efforts.
“The residents of Cranston were promised by the city and the state that [Mulligan’s Island] development would protect the city and its neighborhoods,” Rachel McNally, one of the group’s organizers, says in the Facebook video. “That promise is one that needs to be kept.”